• Cornucopia Vegetarian Restaurant in Dublin

    February 1st, 2011mr meanerdublin, more restaurants (not LA)

    Perhaps the most famous thoroughfare in Dublin is Grafton Street. Immortalized by James Joyce, Christie Moore, U2 and (more lately) the touching musical romance movie “Once”, this eclectic street stretches from verdant St. Stephen’s Green in the south to Trinity College (one of the world’s great seats of learning), and the River Liffey to the north. A few steps west of Grafton St. lies Wicklow St., the heart of Dublin’s historical arts district, and home of Cornucopia, one of Dublin’s few vegetarian and highly vegan-friendly restaurants.

    We visited Cornucopia on a warm autumn evening, and immediately fell in love with the place, despite being initially disappointed with a loooong queue of people waiting inside the door. You see, Cornucopia is counter service and buffet-style, so one has to stand in a line, order from a server and then take a tray to a vacant table – if you can find one. I personally find places with this setup a little stressful – I mean, when you arrive you have no idea how long it will take to get served, and when you’re being served you’re worried about if you can find a place to sit and eat – otherwise you’ll be left standing with a heavy tray attempting to rush to a vacant table, trampling other human beings like some post-apocalypic feeding frenzy.

    OK, I got carried away there, but you get the idea. Let’s now talk about the food.

    Sweet Potato, Pea, and broccoli Dahl with organic brown rice, garden greens, and sprouted beans. €12.95

    Cornucopia is very, very vegan-friendly as most dishes in the buffet are vegan and clearly marked as such. The staff are also knowledgeable about everything – including the veganocity of the bread and other condiments.

    We went for a sweet potato and pea dahl main dish (comes with two salads for €12.95 – about $18), a bowl of tomato fennel and tarragon soup for €3.45 ($4.50) and a medium mix of four salads for €7.95 (about $10).

    Tomato Fennel and Tarragon Soup. €3.45

    While these might be eye-popping prices, one has to take into account the exchange rate and generally more expensive cost of living in Dublin (petrol/gasoline is about $12.30 a gallon at the time of writing).

    Four Salad Combo with mixed greens, garlic potatoes with roasted hazelnuts, soaked barley, and spaghetti with rocket. €7.95

    We found everything to be of the highest quality – nicely prepared, and freshly served. Indeed, they were rotating dishes frequently in the serving deli cabinet, indicating that things were being prepared in the kitchen just in time for being served. To that end, nothing tasted “heat lamped” and the salads were as fresh and crunchy as you could imagine. This “just in time” process unfortunately meant that as one approached the counter the thing you wanted might not be available – and there would be a wait (on top of the long wait you’d already had to get served).

    This was exacerbated the following day when we returned for the the vegan breakfast (the only such thing in all of Ireland that we could determine) but were told (after queueing up) that they had just run out of vegan items and we’d have to wait 45 minutes for the deli to be replenished.

    Needless to say, we didn’t wait!

    On the positive side, they serve organic wines (although why you’d want to drink alcohol anywhere other than some of the best pubs in the world right outside the door eludes me), and they had a blues/jazz guitarist playing music in one corner. I kinda felt sorry for him, as he was taking up space where one could easily fit a four-top table (a scarcity in the restaurant) and people were crowded around him while he was trying to be heard through the din of chatter and eating.

    Cornucopia is a lovely restaurant, but the demand way outstrips their ability to supply the food on a consistent basis, and the overcrowded nature of the establishment is a little uncomfortable – when we sat down to eat, a couple stood next to our table ready to pounce on it as soon as we left.

    Get Rich Quick Scheme: Open a vegan restaurant in Dublin. The demand must be so great.

    19 Wicklow St
    2, Co. Dublin, Ireland
    01 6777583
    Open Mon-Sat 9am-6pm

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7 responses to “Cornucopia Vegetarian Restaurant in Dublin” RSS icon

  • The food sure looks good, and it’s impressive that so much of it is gluten-free; but no, I wouldn’t enjoy the waiting, nor people standing next to my table (LOL).

  • veganyoginimama

    Thank you for posting the review! Cornucopia is one of my favorite vegan friendly restaurants in the world. I hope they have breakfast available for your next trip as it is really delicious. The Quay Coop in Cork is also quite good if you are in Ireland again.

  • Gauri Radha गौरी राधा

    The dishes look good and the front decor seems lovely too.

  • I once ate here way back in 2000 or 2001. I have no recollection of the food. I think I was drunk the entire time I was in Dublin.It looks fab now, however.

  • ate there a few times when i was in dublin a couple of summers ago. looooved it! the soups were so delicious and it was nice to have so many good vegan options in ireland. (btw if you’re ever in kinsale, on the south coast there’s a great b and b that caters very nicely to vegans. the old presbytery.)

  • I love love love this place!! I can’t believe you were just there! I just visited Dublin in January for the first time and found this place and it is soooo amazing. Those garlic potatoes are hands-down fabulous! I wanted to buy their cookbook but it was 35 euros…bummer. I highly recommend this place!

    And if you are ever in Edinburgh you MUST go to Henderson’s! It really reminds me of Cornucopia.

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